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involved. >> right. we also have a crisis brewing in syria with the assad regime growing increasingly desperate. intelligence reports indicate that a chemical attack against his own people could be imminent. even russia, syria's most powerful ally, is alarmed. their foreign minister met yesterday with secretary hillary clinton discussing the possibility of a syria without assad in power. >> wow. >> this morning rebels have declared damascus's airport a military target, warning civilians and airlines not to approach it. >> richard, that's what we're looking at. we're looking at russia to see when russia finally gives up on assad. if they are, in fact, coming close, it's over. he's done. >> that's the beginning of the end. and i think that's finally in play. brahimi who preceded kofi annan trying to do a diplomatic process finally, i think, has something to work with. it's the possibility of the threat that the syrian regime might turn to chemical munitions, and the russians realize that would be the equivalent of jumping and that their long-term equities. the russians realize that woul
to insurgents in syria. >> and he'll be played by peter sellers in the movie. >> the rat deserting the sinking ship. that is the rat deserting the sinking ship. >> how many -- there have been a number of defections at the top of the syrian government. >> lots to go there. >> but the guy in charge of preventing defections is particularly ironic. >> it is ironic. >> is this the end of the beginning or the beginning of the end. just keep watching moscow. as the russians pull away from assad and the syrians, that will be an indicator of how long these guys have to last. 20 # 13 will be the end game. we have to know what comes afterward. we'll watch what happens. >> want to do another paper? >> you want me to do it? >> no, go ahead. >> "the cedar rapids gazette." new numbers show a disappointing holiday sales season with retail growth up less than 1% from last year. some analysts are calling it the worst for retailers since the financial crisis. stores across the country are hoping for a sales bounce after christmas and are doing pretty much anything they can to bring shoppers back into stores beca
's go over the ap's top ten stories and start, number ten, syria. >> yeah. that was the only full fledged foreign story that made the list. it was not a big year for the interesting but complicated foreign stories. >> 9, gay marriage. yeah. that was a strong contender. it was an historic year for that cause. absolutely. >> 8, fiscal cliff, 7, u.s. economy. 6, penn state. 5, libya. 4 obama care. why did obama care rise again? >> you know, it seemed people felt that story was never going to go away. it actually started last year, went through this year and is still an unending story. we don't know. people felt it affected their readers, their constituents. >> obviously the supreme court story was huge. but also the election was huge as well where you had a lot of republicans say okay. we'll basically -- it's been, you know, verified by the american people. >> this was the first year i went back, since 1996, that a presidential election did not make the number one spot. it is pretty unusual. it's because of newtown. >> number 3, superstorm. obviously a huge storm, had a devastating i
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